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AG e-news September 8, 2017

News and events from the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences

September 8, 2017 — 

News and events from the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences


Now to September 23 – The Bruce D. Campbell Farm and Food Discovery Centre is hosting “Canola: A Story of Canadian Innovation”, an interactive exhibition on the Canadian story of ingenuity behind this healthy and versatile crop on loan from the Canada Agriculture and Food Museum.  The display explores the history and development of canola, its uses in industries from food processing to transportation, and its place on Canadian tables. The exhibition also opens a window into the potential future of canola — visitors will learn, through their five senses, about canola and the current research being conducted to improve its varieties and yield.  Be sure to check it out before it is gone!

September 11-17University of Manitoba Homecoming 2017 activities include the grand opening of the new addition of Tache Arts complex, campus tours, Bisons football game and the Homecoming Brown and Gold Brunch. A complete listing of Homecoming 2017 events can be found at

September 12 –  A Department of Entomology Seminar will be presented by Dr. Forough Khadem, Business Development Specialist for Mitacs and the Western Canadian Innovations Offices on “Mitacs Funding & Training Opportunities for Research Collaborations”. Refreshments at 10:00 am, seminar begins at 10:10 am sharp in 220 Animal Science/Entomology Building. All are welcome.

September 17 – Get your family and friends together and head out for an Open Farm Day experience at the Bruce D. Campbell Farm and Food Discovery Centre on Sunday, September 17. Come see where your food comes from! Our research farm offers a look through windows at pigs and piglets in a working hog barn. Jump on the farm tractor and trolley to tour the dairy barn and see live layer hens in an enriched cage. You can grind wheat into flour, crush canola seeds into oil and make ice cream. We will feature baby chicks and a bee observation hive, and of course, the “Canola: A Story of Canadian Innovation” exhibit. Manitoba Pork will offer a free pork-on-a-bun lunch at 12:00 noon until supply is gone. Cold drinks will be available for purchase. Manitoba Pulse and Soybean Growers will also have a display at our site. For more information, call 204-883-2524 or email ffdc [at] umanitoba [dot] ca.

September 19 – A Department of Animal Science Seminar will be held in 219 Animal Science Building at 10:00 am. Saymore Ndou, Ph.D. student, will be giving a scientific talk on “Consequences of dietary fibre on fatty acids nutrition in growing pigs”. All are welcome to attend.

September 20 – The first seminar in the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences 2017-2018 Seminar Series will be held on Wednesday, September 20 at 3:30 pm in the Carolyn Sifton Lecture Theatre, 130 Agriculture Building. Christine Rawluk, Research Development Coordinator, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, will present “The National Centre for Livestock and the Environment: A 10-year evolution”.  Refreshments will be served at 3:00 pm in the Atrium. Everyone is welcome to attend.

September 25-28 – The Agricultural Bioscience International Conference is coming to Winnipeg! Themed “Solutions Start Here”, ABIC 2017 is the premier global meeting which promotes innovation in bioscience to ensure sustainable food, feed, fibre and fuel security as the climate changes. Delegates from around the world will gather to promote the application of agricultural biotechnology. Program and keynotes can be explored at the conference website. Register today at

September 26 – There will be a Department of Soil Science Ph.D. Thesis Defense, presented by Surajum Munira on “Competitive Sorption Interactions of Organic and Inorganic Chemicals in Soils” at 1:00 p.m., Room 346 Ellis Building.

October 5-6 – The Thursday and Friday preceding Thanksgiving weekend are designated for this year’s Fall Term Break.  October 9 is Thanksgiving Day and the University is closed this day. There are no classes during this break period.

October 25 – Save the date – the 9th Annual Daryl F. Kraft Lecture will feature Dr. Brady Deaton, professor in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Guelph and the McCain Family Chair in Food Security, at 3:00 pm in the Richardson International Auditorium, Room 172 Agriculture Building.  Topic to be confirmed.



Karin Wittenberg, Dean, participated in the Pan-Prairie Ag-Food Strategy Sessions on August 28 in Saskatoon with Chris Forbes, Deputy Minister, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, John Knubley, Deputy Minister, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, and Murad Al-Katib, Chair, Economic Strategy Table on Agri-Food.  Deputy Ministers of Agriculture for the three Prairie provinces also participated in an event that tried to identify opportunities supporting a more rapid growth of Canada’s agri-food sector.   While in Saskatoon, Karin was invited to join a session related to the Protein Innovations Canada SuperCluster submission.

Martin Scanlon, Associate Dean Research and Food & Human Nutritional Sciences, was the keynote speaker at the AACCI Canadian Prairie Section annual meeting held September 6 at the Canadian International Grains Institute.  His presentation was entitled “Cereal Science Innovation”.

Trust Beta, Food and Human Nutritional Sciences, spent three weeks at the China National Rice Research Institute (CNRRI), Fuyang District, Hangzhou, Zhejiang where she gave two oral presentations as an invited speaker on “Cereal phytochemicals and health” to the Institute on August 15 and on “Challenges in unravelling mechanisms related to health benefits of rice and other cereals” specifically to the Rice Product Quality Supervision and Inspection Center, Ministry of Agriculture, China on August 24. She has also been involved with part of the research on rice nutrition supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the special research funds for the Central Public Research Institute of the China National Rice Research Institute, and the Special Project of Agricultural Product Quality Safety Risk Assessment, Ministry of Agriculture, China.

The Department of Food and Human Nutritional Sciences welcomes Dr. Jinle Xiang who has joined Trust Beta’s research group as from 21 August for one year. Dr. Xiang is a visiting scholar sponsored by the China Scholarship Council. He is an Associate Professor in the Food and Bioengineering College of Henan University of Science & Technology, Luoyang, China. During his stay, Dr. Xiang is interested in pursuing investigations related to in vitro models of digestion for grain products.

Kristen MacMillan, Plant Science (Agronomist in Residence), was invited as a station leader for 2017 Hail School in Portage la Prairie, August 2 and 3, where she trained 120 crop adjusters on soybean growth and development and hail damage. This was the first year of the school put on by Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation in Portage la Prairie. Kristen’s soybean hail research was also presented to farmers and agronomists at SMART day on July 19 and on Goldenwest radio

Kristen also attended the field days in Melita (July 25) and Arborg (July 20) to present her soybean agronomy trials where the applied research centres hosted 50-80 farmers and agronomists from the region.

On August 9, a Twilight tour was held at the Ian N. Morrison Research Farm where agronomy research from Kristen MacMillan and Yvonne Lawley were featured. The tour was hosted by MPSG, MWBGA, MANFLAX, and MCGA.

With hard work from the Plant Science Graduate Student Association (PSGSA) committee and help from faculty, staff, graduate students, and summer students, this August’s Plant Science Departmental Charity BBQ raised 500 dollars and many non-perishable food items to be donated to Winnipeg Harvest.

Supported by the Murphy Foundation Incorporated Indigenous Mentorship and Experiential Education Fund, two students from the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences were placed in on-campus summer positions. Brad Feltham, a Human Nutritional Sciences (Second Degree) student worked under Dr. Miyoung Suh at the Richardson Center of Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals assisting with a study to determine whether DHA altered the fatty acid metabolism and antioxidative mechanisms in the fetal liver after prenatal alcohol exposure. Through his written report, Mr. Feltham noted this was the first time he was exposed to working in a study regarding fetal liver as usually, HNS work focuses on maternal nutrition. To round out the experience, Mr. Feltham attended professional networking events and helped mentor two students who came into the lab to learn fundamental biochemistry principles. Overall, the experience helped to reveal the breadth of career possibilities that come with a B.Sc. in Human Nutritional Sciences. Hannah Keenes, pursing a B.Sc in Agriculture, Animal Systems, worked at the Gut Microbiome and Large Animal Biosecurity Laboratory under the supervision of Dr. Ehsan Khafipour where. There she was involved in  laboratory work including bacterial culturing and DNA extraction, was involved in swine trials, and participated in the graduate student journal club meetings and attended educational summer student sessions focused on microbiota research.  As a second-year undergraduate student, this was Ms. Keenes’ first agriculture related job which she noted exceeded her expectations in experiencing animal science research. Still too early in her academic career to define her career path, Ms. Keenes wrote that the experience opened her eyes to microbiota research and to the graduate studies options available to her once she earns her undergraduate degree.



The UofM Libraries are seeking study participants from the following user groups: undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, WRHA employees. If you are a member of one of the these groups and interested in participating in the study, please contact Ruby Warren (ruby [dot] warren [at] umanitoba [dot] ca) to obtain further information on the study, including a consent form for your review, and to see if we can schedule a testing appointment. You are under no obligation to continue with the study once you have requested further information or the informed consent form, and may withdraw at any time. This study has been approved by the Joint-Faculty Research Ethics Board. Any concerns can be directed to the Human Ethics Coordinator at 204-474-7122 or email: humanethics [at] umanitoba [dot] ca.

The University of Manitoba Libraries and Information Services & Technology (IST) have made special arrangements with Gartner, Inc. to bring you free, campus-wide access to Gartner Core Information Technology Research for Higher Education Institutions. Through an online web portal, you can now search and download the latest Gartner® research reports and briefings, including real-life examples of how technology is used in a broad range of industries, including education, business, computer science, engineering & technology, law and medicine.  To get started, visit the IST Service Catalogue for more information at  This database will also be accessible from the Libraries’ Website under the A-Z Listing of Databases.  Please note that this is a one-year subscription. UM Libraries and IST will evaluate continuing the subscription based on interest in and use of the service.



Jason Gibbs, Entomology, was interviewed on CBC Radio Noon on September 7 about wasps.

Martin Entz, Plant Science, was quoted in the article “Researchers investigating boosting organic hemp yields” in the Manitoba Co-operator (September 7) – read it on page 18 at

Nazim Cicek, Biosystems Engineering, has written two recent op-ed pieces for the Winnipeg Free Press – and

David Lobb, Soil Science, wrote the article “Getting the full story on soil health” in Country Guide (September 2017) – see page 29 at

David was also highlighted in Laura Rance’s column “Soil degradation is dirty business” in the Winnipeg Free Press (August 26)- (behind a paywall)

Supply management research by Ryan Cardwell and Chad Lawley, Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics, was featured the article “It’s time for Conservatives to ditch dairy cow Marxism” in Macleans (September 1) –

Yvonne Lawley, Plant Science, was quoted in the article “Season too short for cover crops? Maybe not” in Country Guide (September 2017) – originally run in Manitoba Co-operator in February 2017

Yvonne was also interviewed in the article “Prairie corn: agronomics and economics” in Corn Guide (September 2017) – see page 10 at

A study conducted in part by Chad Lawley, Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics, was featured in the article “Farm it like you’re ‘just’ renting it?” in Grainews (August 29) – see page 14 at

Nasir Javed, Plant Science post-doctorate fellow, was quoted in “Cold tolerance and disease resistance in corn tested” in the Manitoba Co-operator (August 31) –

Kris Dick, Biosystems Engineering, and his work on the Alternative Village was featured in the article “U of M showcases alternative building materials” in the Manitoba Co-operator (August 31) – see page 25 at

Peter Jones, Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals,  interviewed CTV (August 31) for a garlic study –

Doug Cattani, Plant Science, was quoted in the article “Spotted knapweed could do more harm than leafy spurge” in the Manitoba Co-operator (August 30) –

Rob Duncan, Plant Science, was noted in Pembina Valley Online for his Early Scientist Award from NAPB –

Food and Human Nutritional Sciences students Afroza Ferdouse, Md Monirujjaman, Ala’a Eideh and Rokiatou Kone Berethe have been helping deliver a newcomer nutrition program for youth on behalf of Food Matters Manitoba and it was featured on CTV News –

Kristen MacMillan, Plant Science (Agronomist in Residence), was featured on Real Ag radio and Soybean School West, discussing challenges with soybeans in 2017, including iron chlorosis and aphids –



Fan, G., and Beta, T. 2017. Discrimination of geographical origin of Napirira bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) based on phenolic profiles and antioxidant activity. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis 62: 217-222.

Maryam Shamloo, Elizabeth A. Babawale, Agnelo Furtado, Robert J. Henry, Peter K Eck & Peter J. H. Jones. 2017. Effects of genotype and temperature on accumulation of plant secondary metabolites in Canadian and Australian wheat grown under controlled environments. Nature Scientific Reports 7, 9133, doi:10.1038/s41598-017-09681-5 (2017) –

Kulshreshtha, S., C. Grant, B. Amiro, K. Ominski, G. Legesse, and A. Alemu. 2017.  Economic and greenhouse gas emission impacts of doubling of forage area in Manitoba, Canada.  Canadian Journal of Soil Science 97: 487 – 496.

As part of a project led from the University of Saskatchewan, Martin Scanlon, Food & Human Nutritional Sciences, was co-author on two papers.  The project funded by Canada Bread, NSERC and the Saskatchewan Agriculture Development Fund is investigating the effect of salt reduction on dough handling properties.  Health Canada is recommending reduction in the amount of sodium in baked goods in order to reduce the incidence of hypertension in Canada.  For the baking industry, one implication of salt reduction is issues during processing.  These papers indicate that doughs made from different Canadian varieties respond differently to reductions in salt content in the dough formulation:

Yovchev, A.G., Briggs, C., Stone, A.K., Hucl, P., Nickerson, M.T. and Scanlon, M.G. (2017). Effect of salt reduction on dough handling and the bread making quality of Canadian Western Red Spring wheat varieties. Cereal Chemistry, 94, 752-759.

Yovchev, A.G., Briggs, C.E., Stone, A.K., Scanlon, M.G., Tyler, R.T., Hucl, P.J. and Nickerson, M.T. (2017). Interrelationships of flour and dough properties under reduced salt level conditions. Cereal Chemistry, 94, 760-769.

Amiro, B.D., M. Tenuta, M. Gervais, A. Glenn, and X. Gao. 2017. A decade of carbon flux measurements with annual and perennial crop rotations on the Canadian Prairies.  Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 247:491-502.

Alemu, A.W., B.D. Amiro, S. Bittman, D. MacDonald, and K.H. Ominski. 2017. Greenhouse gas emissions of forage-based beef cow-calf operations: A whole-farm analysis of 295 Canadian farms. Agricultural Systems 151: 73-83.



IMPORTANT NOTE – There is now an AED (automated external defibrillator) device located near the front west entrance of the Agriculture Building across from Room 153. The location of the AED device is on record with the U of M Environment & Health Office and is registered with Heart & Stroke Canada.

Agriculture Building Fall and Winter Hours – Effective now to April 30, 2018, the Agriculture Building hours, including the Library Study Hall, will be: open Monday-Friday 7:30 am – 10:00 pm; Saturday and Sunday 8:00 am to 5:00 pm; Holidays – closed.

Volunteers Needed! The Bruce D. Campbell Farm and Food Discovery Centre needs some extra hands for Open Farm Day on September 17. Volunteer duties would include meeter/greeters, activity station staff, and parking assistants. Shifts can be half or full day. For more information or to secure your volunteer spot, contact Kristen Matwychuk at ffdc [at] umanitoba [dot] ca or call 204-883-2524.

Female Mentors Needed – Did you have mentors in your career and are ready to give back and become a mentor to early career women? Are you interested in furthering your professional network by joining other mentors with mentees at four fun evening events per year?  The Faculty of Agricultural & Food Science has a newly formed mentorship program focused on pairing female students with female professionals in the sector. We are looking for professionals to contact us and express interest in becoming a mentor and contribute to the career development of the next generation of female professionals. Please contact Siobhan at siobhan [dot] maas [at] umanitoba [dot] ca with any questions or to sign up as a mentor. More details at

The Department of Animal Science is seeking applicants to be nominated for a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair, with a focus on Integrative Analyses for Sustainable Food Systems – Closing date is Friday, September 8.

This is a reminder that all U of M employees must take the Accessible Customer Service Training by November 1, 2017 to be in compliance with provincial government legislation. The online training module is approximately 35 minutes long and can be done at your own pace. Alternatively, you may sign up for in-person training through LOD.  Read more at

Brass Nametags – The deadline for ordering brass name tags is Friday, September 15.  The 1″ by 3″ nametag would have the University logo, your name and “Agricultural and Food Sciences” or your department name printed in black. They cost approximately $8-11 each. Please email crystal [dot] jorgenson [at] umanitoba [dot] ca your name, department name if applicable, whether you want a PIN or MAGNET fastener and your method of payment (FOAP or cash).

Biosecurity Zones – September 1 saw a gradual introduction of a series of biosecurity protocols designed to limit the transfer of pests into, out of and among the controlled growth environments on and off the University of Manitoba campus. These are standard research protocols that need to be introduced into the Department of Plant Science facilities. The first of these restricts public access to the four, west side greenhouses.  Any questions, please contact Rob Visser, Greenhouse Manager, at 204-474-6065.

Imaging Workshops – Tee Research Institute in Oncology and Hematology are offering two training workshops “Microscopy, Optics and Imaging” on November 13-17 and “3D, Spectral Imaging” on November 20-24.  To see the workshop and registration details, visit

What are you doing after work on Fridays this winter? Come curl with us in Aggie Row Curling, a friendly and long-running league with folks from the Faculty and from Agriculture Canada. We play Friday afternoons at 4:30 at the Pembina Curling Club – close by and easy to get to. The season starts in October 6 and runs til March. No experience is necessary and all are welcome. Full time or half time curlers welcome. For more information contact Gaetane Tremblay at Tre [at] mts [dot] net.

Game Changer is back – this is the two-part competition open to all Manitobans (16 and older) who can identify problems with a global reach and find tangible solutions for them. Phase 1 is the idea submission stage, with the top 5 ideas receiving $500 – deadline is September 20. Phase 2 involves cross-functional teams developing solutions to the problems with the grand-prize winning team receiving $10,000. More details at


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